Union learning reps could lead to work conflict

Plans to introduce union representatives this year to provide workplace
learning initiatives could lead to clashes with employers’ training

The Employers Forum on Statute and Practice (EFSP) is concerned that the
Government’s proposals on union learning representatives, due to be brought in
later this year under the Employment Act, are not nearly detailed enough and
will cause confusion.

Robbie Gilbert, chief executive of the EFSP, said: "When [the
legislation] was first tabled it related to basic skills particularly those
people who did not have basic reading and numeracy skills. However, at some
point during the forming of the legislation the [union learning
representatives] seem to have been given a much wider role.

"There is a lack of clarity, for example, over whether they can
commission training and if so who pays," he said.

Gilbert said the current code provided by arbitration body Acas, is not
detailed enough. He called on the Department for Trade and Industry to provide
improved guidance to help Acas draw up a more effective code on learning

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